October 10, 2017

Day 8 - Corner Brook, Newfoundland

As the captain seems to do every day, we arrive a little early, and the ship is quickly cleared. It was bound to happen, and today is the day. It it pouring rain, foggy and dreary. Few passengers, others than those taking tours, bother to get off the ship.

The dock is primarily an industrial dock without even a tent for cruise ships. Hundreds of sections of pipe cover much of the dock. I would guess they are 8 to 10 feet in diameter and of several varying lengths. I am unable to determine what they might be for. The walls are too thin to be concrete, and too smooth to be cast iron. They might be either plastic or carbon fiber with a protective coating on both the interior and exterior.

Corner Brook is a relatively small community. The major, and maybe only, employer of significance is a paper mill. Until a few years ago it was the largest mill in the world. Water vapor pours from dozens of stacks across the plant, adding to the moisture in the air. How much pollution being dumped into the harbor is unknown.

At one point an ambulance arrives to disembark a passenger. There have been several "Alpha" calls since we left Bayonne, the call for the entire crew to a medical emergency.

Later in the day, the temperature rises into the mid sixties and the rain lets up to an occasional drizzle. I remain on the ship.

I continue to dine in the main dining room, the veal shank is excellent. Michael and Jackie, my table mates were two of the passengers that took a tour today, a hike on several trails. The trails were well maintained, the rain was minimal and the scenery was beautiful and they finally even got to see some trees that have begun to change color. The evening before they were seriously considering canceling the tour, now they are glad they didn't.

Our headliner entertainment tonight is a comedian. I get to the theater about 30 minutes early to find every seat occupied. I stand at the back of the balcony. About half way thru his show there is another alpha call to the casino. He stops mid sentence, and after a few minutes the show continues. His show was good, and he did it without resorting to foul language as many comedians do.

Our next port is Quebec City. For about 200 miles of the transit, we are restricted to a maximum speed of 10 knots because we will be in an area where whales migrate. The speed limit is strictly enforced by the Canadian Coast Guard, enforced to the extent that last week they even fined one of their own ships for speeding at 10.1 knots. Soon after we depart we are cruising at 20 knots, the wind is on our bow in excess of 40 mph, and it raining very hard.

I listen to the pub entertainer in the piano bar for about an hour and then head to the cabin for the evening. I think his accent might be English, but I'm not sure. His music is good and varied, but I have a little difficulty understanding him when he is talking. Of course that is made more difficult by a group of 15 guests next to me that are carrying on a rather loud conversation, oblivious to the fact most people in the room are there to listen to the entertainer.

Tonight we turn our clock back 1 hour. I am relatively confident this is not in conjunction with any time zone, but an arbitrary decision on the part of the captain to leave the additional 30 minute adjustment for the last night before arriving in Quebec City.

Despite running at near top speed there is no vibration in my cabin, but the entire ship creaks and moans. There is no information to tell us the sea conditions, but given the wind speed and ship motion I would expect the seas are probably 10 to 12 feet.

Tomorrow is a sea day, I'm ready for one. Six ports in six days is unusual, not what I usually encounter. No alarm tonight!

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